As said before, law and social order are emergent phenomena, in a way similar to goods produced on the market. They develop trough human interaction, similar to how money or language do.

Once a monopoly on law and order is established (the state) evolution of law end order towards a desirable end becomes impossible. What results is a perversion of law, and a perversion of social order. This state of affairs has been called decadence, corruption or degeneracy. All these terms mean a deviation from a proper, natural state of affairs.

Small states can imitate this process, to an extend, if their institutions are diverse. Those that have better institutions will tend to attract people and capital, and thus become more influential. However, this quasi evolution might itself be an illusion. Ultimately, there seems to be a tendency towards an Empire, and in that case all evolution ceases. Without input from the process of social evolution, any change in law and social order will be irrational in more than half of the cases. That process can only lead to the steady deterioration of conditions in society.

Caesar by Adolphe Yvon

Ultimately, the tyranny of the state and the corruption in the mores of the people will lead to catastrophic consequences, as has already happened before. In vane have the Roman Emperors attempted to recreate the “traditional values” of the day. Legislation was introduced to increase fertility. Bachelor taxes were imposed, there was talk of “popular ownership” (redistribution of land to the poor). All of these efforts were in vain, since none addressed the root core of the issue, which is the empire itself.

An Orgy in Imperial Rome by Henryk Siemiradzki

“Traditional values” are a result of the discipline social evolution imposes on humans. Either trough violent struggle or competition, in a system where evolution is allowed to function, those values that are best suited for survival and reproduction will be rewarded. In a system where social evolution is not allowed to function, “traditional values” are useless. There is no way to impose them on people who have no use of them. To think that conservative authoritarianism will work, if only it were brutal enough, is to delude oneself. Central planning does not work for economic affairs, and it surely does not work in the realm of duties and values.

Any sensible and moral person has a duty to try to slow down or reverse this decline. The decadence of the modern world might be aesthetically and morally unpleasing, but it will be nothing compared to the hell that follows, once the empire collapses, and the hunger, misery, wretchedness and the pitiable state of affairs people will live in once the collapse is over. Languages might be forgotten, nations might disappear, arts lost and not to mention the absurd number of lost lives. Think of that when you hear of “acceleration”.

The Triumph of the Guillotine in Hell by Nicolas Antoine Taunay

There’s only one thing that can be done to reverse the decline, and that is to dismantle the state and to propose a stable and a viable stateless order that will be able to challenge and resist the state, as well as any invader.

To be able to challenge the state, the victims of state oppression will have to form a broad coalition with the friends of liberty. That coalition will have to be well organized, and will have to be able to reliably mobilize enough forces to resist the state. It will have to be organized differently from the way in which political parties or states are organized. Otherwise, the only thing it will be able to accomplish is to replace one state apparatus or one political party with another. That may help to slow down the decline, but in its essence, the problem will not be resolved.

To truly challenge the state itself, not just its perceived excesses, those that resist it will have to be organized differently. To be able to challenge the state, we have to start organizing today, so that we can build an order between ourselves that will be able to function reliably without recourse to the state, and that will be able to mobilize forces to resist the state.

The Conspiracy of Claudius Civilis by Rembrandt

It is vane to wait for the collapse of the state. If we were to be able to profit from such a collapse, we would have to be organized in such a way to be able to live without recourse to state laws and to be able to deter any potential aggressor. How can a movement or an organization that cannot challenge the state it lives under ever hope to challenge a foreign state, or a horde of barbarians? How can a society which cannot function without recourse to the state apparatus ever hope to profit from statelessness? How can such an organization not collapse in infighting the moment that the state ceases to function?

I believe I have discovered a system that is both stateless, stable and that can mobilize enough forces to resist the state.

The system

A number of people in a given area will enter into pacts, recognizing each others’ rights and property, and pledging an exact quantity of time, resources and energy for their mutual defense. Let’s call these pacts “free councils”, and their members “freemen”. Naturally, when free councils are small and few, they will not have enough resources to defend themselves against the state. That is why rights each freemen recognizes to another and is prepared to defend will have to be limited, for the time being. A right to be free of involuntary taxation is something that one has to fight for. That is what one would call “full freeman status”

All decisions in the free council will be taken by consensus of of its freemen members. To implement majoritarianism is to turn the council into a small state. Naturally, obstructionists will be kicked out by the rest of the members.

All obligations will have a limited duration. A man that obligates himself for an indefinite period ceases to be a free man.

A freeman is only bound by obligations he alone has taken. There will be no compulsory hereditary membership, or “collective decision-making”. Any new member will have to personally assume any obligation for these obligations to be valid.

To fail to fulfill the obligations one has freely assumed is a crime. It immediately disqualifies anyone from being a member of a free council. One cannot be a freeman if one cannot be relied upon. The entire system is build on the trust people have that others will fulfill the obligations they have freely assumed, and untrustworthy people have no part in the system. That is not the same as deciding to leave the council, while having no outstanding debts to the rest of the members. The latter case only means that one is no longer a part of the council, and it is not considered a crime.

Free councils are territorial pacts of a small scope, but they will form confederacies with other free councils, and several confederacies will form a Grand Council. The Grand Council is that level of organization at which one can realistically resit the state, that is on a regional, state or national level. All instances will be organized in the same way.

The strategy

It all starts from a small pact. The pact that doesn’t necessarily need to be territorial in scope. A pact you can start today will be crucial in building trust between its members, which will be social capital that can be used in the future.

Oath of Rutli, by Jean Renggli 

After that, pacts will evolve into free councils, and they will have a territorial element. Free councils will then expand in several ways.

First, the simple multiplication. More councils will likely spring up in different communities, and model themselves on those that came before.

Second, more and more members will be attracted from the community, if the council is perceived to do good. It is important to note that not all members of the community, and not even all sympathizers need or should be members of the council. A freeman is a person of a given nature, as was discovered by Aristotle, and the state society is not very conducive to the development of a respect for truth, justice and the like. Any new member must be a marginal benefit to all the members of the free council.

Third, the council will expand its prerogative. At first, non-territorial pacts and societies will only have an educational role. A free council will start to work to work on a public good of sorts that benefits the community the free council represents, and to manage that public good. It will start to use sporting and other events to build the community (itself a public good). Later, it will expand its prerogative to include a system of preparedness, an autonomous legal system (that will, in its maturity, be able to serve the community without the recourse to the state), a political platform to capture local governing bodies to get them out of the way of the free council.

Fourth, the numerous free councils that have since been formed will start forming alliances, coalitions and confederacies. The extent and the depth of their cooperation will be crucial to resist the state.

Oath of Pontida by Amos Cassioli

Finally, there is the expansion relative to the state. The Grand Council will have to, at some point, start pushing against the power of the state. It is very important that the demands appear reasonable and that the public opinion is as favorable to them as possible. There has to be a progressive escalation of demands that will strengthen the council relative to the state, but that will avoid direct confrontation. One will have to exercise extreme caution and be realistic with regards to ones capabilities.

Pericles’ Funeral Oration by Philipp Foltz

If the Grand Council becomes strong enough, the state will start respecting its autonomy, to a degree. Sometimes it will tacitly agree to the Council’s demands, sometimes it will issue an unilateral proclamation and sometimes the state will sign a treaty with the Council, recognizing its autonomy while demanding taxes or other contributions. These have to be regarded as great strategic victories, not as “abandoning the cause”. We are in the realm of real life here, not in the realm of ideological discussions. All decisions will have to be tactical.

Cicero Denounces Catiline by Cesare Maccari

Ultimately, I find it to be entirely possible that a Grand Council could replace a state it finds itself in. At that point, we would be able to say that humanity has achieved a stateless society in our lifetime. This is not impossible. Follow the page and get in touch with me to find out what you can do to make that into reality.

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